Object Play Inspired By Horrendously Hot Days

There’s nothing better than a good prop. In this case, the prop is as many cushions or pillows as you can find around your house. What to do with your collection of cushions? Well, sir or madam, the choice is up to you, but here are some ideas.

For Babies

Infants of all ages will enjoy exploring the different textures (and probably tastes) of your various pillows. Older babies love obstacle courses that allow them to climb over, crawl under, and go between these smooshable squares. If you’ve got a crawler or walker, you can enjoy a game of peek-a-boo or chase as you move among the obstacle course you’ve created. Benefits of this activity: multi-sensory stimulation, object permanence, fine and gross motor skill development, anticipation

For Toddlers
Toddlers will also love games of hide-and-seek, peek-a-boo, or chase. Let them help you come up with other ways to play. Can you count the cushions? Can you sort them by color? What about building towers and knocking them down? Or how about building a path for playing cars, trucks, or trains. Where can they go over a “mountain,” through a “tunnel,” or under a “bridge”? Benefits of this activity: object permanence, fine and gross motor skill development, creativity, language development, spatial awareness, pretend play, counting and reasoning skills, problem solving

For Preschoolers and School-age Kids

With preschoolers and school-aged kids, the only limit on this game is their imagination. While the above ideas for toddlers may give you some places to start, you’ll find that cushions can be anything. I can’t tell you how many memories I have of playing house with the couch cushions as a child. But there’s no reasons your cushions can’t be a boat, a plane, a dinosaur, a cave, or a castle. I even played with a little girl one day who fed me “pizza” and “watermelon” pillows. Benefits of this activity: pretend play, language development, problem solving, creativity

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